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Frequently Asked Questions

Clicking on the topic name takes you to the questions for that topic.

About Bardic Web

  • What is Bardic Web?
  • Getting Started: Logins and Characters

  • What is the difference between a login ID and a character ID?
  • How many characters can I create?
  • How do I create a character?
  • How do I change between characters?
  • A Note on Character Faces.
  • IMPanel & Instant Messages

  • What is the IMPanel?
  • I don’t see my IMPanel. ~ Or ~ I don’t receive Instant Messages.
  • How do I send a message?
  • What do the different colored icons mean next to the names?
  • What do the blinking icons mean?
  • I want to send an IM, but the character’s name is gray, and I don’t get an Instant Message.
  • Can I have my character be invisible, and not show at all on the IMPanel?
  • Can I save my Instant Messages?
  • Are there any messages that go against Bardic Web’s rules?
  • I just got an abusive message from another member. What do I do now?
  • I accidentally clicked the Copy for Admin button on an Instant Message, but it's not an abusive message! What do I do now?
  • I get too many Instant Messages! Isn’t there a way to stop them?
  • Homes, Avatars & Signatures

  • What is the difference between a Home, a Profile, and a Study?
  • What size Avatar and Home Image should I have?
  • I’m not good with graphics programs. Where can I find ready-made Avatars?
  • Where can I get HTML help?
  • Can I upload and use MIDI files on my homepage?
  • How can I get more webspace?
  • Is there a way to go to a character’s home without using the Character Finder?
  • What are Signatures?
  • How large and what file type should my Signature be?
  • Navigating the Site

  • The Navigation Tabs
  • How can I quickly get to the Scrolls & Mythos Books that I belong to?
  • How do I delete one of my characters, go to their home, or change their password?
  • How do I know if someone has left me a note at one of my homes?
  • How do I find Messages I have Archived?
  • How do I find a specific Character, Novel, or Reference Book, or view past Daily Indexes?
  • What are Bookmarks?
  • What is the My Web Page File Manager for?
  • What is the Friends list?
  • How do I make someone my Friend?
  • How can I find out who has me as a Friend?
  • All About Scrolls

  • Where can I find a list of all the Scrolls?
  • What are the Genres?
  • How do I join a Scroll?
  • What is the difference between an Open and a Closed scroll?
  • What are the scroll Ratings, and what do they mean?
  • What are the Tales, Role-Play Boards, and Discussion Boards, and what are they used for?
  • What do the navigation bars above and below the displayed post do?
  • My favorite topic in my scroll (or mythos book) disappeared. What happened?
  • Who are the Scroll Leadership and what do they do?
  • How do I become a Board Member?
  • How do I start a scroll?
  • What kind of stories can I have in my Scroll?
  • How do I set up my Scroll?
  • What is a Joint Scroll Ownership Agreement?
  • About Mythos Books

  • What are Mythos Books, and where do I find them?
  • Who are the Mythos Masters?
  • How do I join a Mythos Book?
  • What are the Glossary and discussion boards for?
  • How do I start a Mythos Book?
  • About Blogs and Private Groups

  • Where are Character Blogs?
  • How do I get a Blog?
  • What are Private Groups, and how can I get one?
  • How can I join a Private Group?
  • Community Questions

  • What is the Gossamer Thread?
  • What are the Badges I see on character?s homes and mentioned around the site?
  • What are the awards at Bardic Web?
  • What are the Plumes, and who gives them out?
  • What is the Mentorship Program?
  • What is the Family Tree?
  • BW Staff & Problems at Bardic Web

  • What do the different staff members do at Bardic Web?
  • Who are the current Staff Members of Bardic Web?
  • How does one become a Muse, Demi-Muse or WebWeaver?
  • I forgot my password.
  • I?m having problems with another member. What do I do?
  • Membership

  • How does membership work?
  • What are the different membership levels, and what do they mean?
  • How do I upgrade or renew my membership?
  • Bardicash

  • What is Bardicash?
  • What can I buy with Bardicash?
  • How do I acquire Bardicash and how do I know how much I have?
  • I would like to donate, but I don?t know the conversion rate for my country?s currency and the Canadian dollar.
  • Policies

  • What are my Copyright entitlements at Bardic Web?
  • Religion, Politics and Bardic Web.
  • B.W’s Policy on MasterBards and their Scrolls.
  • B.W’s Policy on Polls and Voting.
  • General

  • What are the Terms of Use for the site?
  • How do I report an abuse of the site?

  • About Bardic Web:

    What is Bardic Web?

    Round Table Writing is the foundation of the Bardic Web, collaborative stories that include all writers. Everyone, at some point, gets to be the Hero. There is no spotlight here, everyone is equal, every writer important and integral to the stories. The building blocks of BW are originality, respect for fellow writers and their creations, communication, and the development of great writing skills. The most important thing, besides complying with the site Terms and Conditions, is have a good time. Bardic Web is a place to relax, be creative, socialize and let yourself drift off to where ever your imagination takes you.

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    Getting Started - Creating a Character:

    What is the difference between a login ID and a character ID?

    Your login ID is what you use to sign in to Bardic Web, and that name is private; only you will see it. Characters are the faces you use to participate in scrolls and other areas. One login can have multiple characters.

    How many characters can I create?

    As a Novice, you can create one character, which is made at the time you register. After a minimal number of logins, you will automatically progress to Bard level, and you can create up to four more characters. You can also purchase additional characters by subscribing to the Journeyman Bard or MasterBard level.

    How do I create a character?

    Go to My Account and click on the Create a Character image. It will take you directly to the form to fill out. OR - just click on the link to the right, and it will take you to the page.

    How do I change between characters?

    At the top of each page is the Character Menu - a pulldown box with a list of all your character?s names on it.

  • Click on the name to view your other character names.
  • Select one of the names from the menu.
  • A dialog box appears asking for the password for that character.
  • Enter the correct password into the dialog box, and you have switched.
  • A Note on Character Faces:

    When posting around the boards, PLEASE use the correct character face. It is confusing and unsettling for other writers to see the wrong name associated with the wrong character post. It only takes a second to switch faces and it is a courtesy to your fellow writers. The only time you should be writing other characters under your ID is if they are NPC. If that character takes on a life of its own, please create a new ID for it.

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    IMPanel & Instant Messages:

    What is the IMPanel?

    The IMPanel, or Instant Message Panel, should pop up immediately after you log into Bardic Web. It's a long narrow panel that shows you who is online at Bardic Web. Clicking on a character?s name will open up an Instant Message (IM) box, where you can type a message and talk to anyone online. (Clicking on the icon next to their name will take you to their home.)

    I don’t see my IMPanel.
    ~ Or ~
    I don’t receive Instant Messages.

    Both the IMPanel and Instant Messages work on the same principle as pop up ads (There are no pop-up ads here at Bardic Web.), so if you have a program that blocks them, you won?t get either Instant Messages or your IMPanel. Just set your browser and any antivirus programs to allow pop-ups on Bardic Web, or disable the pop-up blocker while you're on BW and you will receive them normally. For further information see the Unblocking Pop-ups page. Alternatively, you may use the Instant Message Portal.

    How do I send a message?

    You can send a message to anyone listed on the IMPanel. Just click on their name, and an Instant Message window pops up. Insert your text there. You can include HTML code in your message.

    What do the different colored icons mean next to the names?

    The different icons represent the different levels of membership, or that the character is a member of the Bardic Web's Staff. Clicking on the icon takes you to that character?s home. For further information about member levels, go to the Bardic Web Membership Levels page.

    What do the blinking icons mean?

    A blinking icon is a busy signal. Unless you are already in conversation with that character, courtesy dictates that you leave them alone. The busy signal is available to all members by clicking on the Status link at the top of the IMPanel.

    I want to send an IM, but the character?s name is gray, and I don?t get an Instant Message.

    If a character’s name is gray instead of green, they are using the "Do Not Disturb" feature, which will allow their name to be shown but not allow IMs. They may be busy, or on a computer where they do not wish to receive grams. See the Bardicash section of this FAQ for information on how to buy this feature.

    Can I have my character be invisible, and not show at all on the IMPanel?

    Yes - by buying the feature. See the Bardicash section of this FAQ for information on how to buy this feature.

    Can I save my Instant Messages?

    Yes, you can save IMs if you have purchased the IM Bank feature. See the Bardicash section of this FAQ for information on how to buy this feature. If you have purchased an IM Bank, you can click on the Save to Bank button above the message body. There will be an Open Message Bank button on the bottom of your IMPanel that allows you to retrieve stored messages. Your Bank can hold up to 50 saved messages.

    Are there any messages that go against Bardic Web?s rules?

    Yes, abusive and harassing messages are not allowed. Unwanted requests for personal information, including A/S/L (age/sex/location), your personal email address or any other private details are against Bardic Web?s Privacy Policy.

    I just got an abusive message from another member. What do I do now?

    Bardic Web does not tolerate abuse of its members. If you are sent an abusive message, click on the Copy for Admin button on the offending message. It will go directly to the Bardic Web Muse, who will take the appropriate action.

    I accidentally clicked the Copy for Admin button on an Instant Message, but it's not an abusive message! What do I do now?

    Don?t worry. We understand that mistakes happen, and everyone has pushed the wrong button from time to time. Just tell a Muse and they?ll be happy to take care of it for you. If a Muse is not online, you can always send an IM to yourself that says you sent one in error, and Copy that clarification for Admin.

    I get too many Instant Messages! Isn’t there a way to stop them?

    Yes, there are three ways. If you would like the option to be online and let people see you but not message you, you can purchase Do Not Disturb for only one Bardicoin. Or to be completely unseen, Invisibility is available for only two Bardicoins. These features can be turned on and off using the Status link at the top of the IMPanel. See the Bardicash section of this FAQ for information on how to buy these features.

    If you are receiving unwanted Instant Messages from a single person, you can click on the Ignore Messages From (member name) link at the bottom of each gram. This will tell you that "Messages from (member name) will no longer be delivered." This will stay in effect until you click on their name in the panel again, as if you were going to send them an Instant Message. You will get a box that says "You are ignoring (member name). Do you wish to revoke the ignore?" If you choose Yes, then messages will be delivered as normal again.

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    Homes, Avatars & Signatures:

    What is the difference between a Home, a Profile, and a Study?

    Your Home is where you can get creative, and decorate to your heart?s content. It is an expression of your character?s identity. On it you will find the list of the Scrolls and Mythos books you are part of, and a list of everyone you have made friends with for that character.

    Your Profile is a summary of who your character is, what scrolls and mythos books your character is in, and when you logged in last as that character. Both places have a link for people to leave you a note, but you need to go to your My Account page to be able to read your messages. See the section on messages for more info.

    A Study is an extra customizable page that can be purchased for three bardicoins per character, and it is good for the life of that character. If the character is deleted, the study is also deleted. See the Bardicoin section of this FAQ for information on how to buy this feature.

    What size Avatar and Home Image should I have?

  • Avatars should be no more that 100 pixels wide, and no more than 160 pixels high, in either .gif or .jpg format. Don?t forget to web-optimize the image to 72 dpi before uploading it to your home. If your avatar looks distorted when you upload it, try resizing it to exactly 160h x 100w with your graphics program, then re-uploading it to your home. Avatars are availabe in Bardic Web?s galleries.
  • Home Images should be no more than 200 pixels wide, and no more than about 160 pixels high, also in either .gif or .jpg format. The width is forced, the height you have a bit of leeway on. Make sure to web-optimize the image by saving it at 72 dpi before uploading it to your home. If your home image looks distorted when you upload it, try resizing it to exactly 160h x 200w with your graphics program, then re-uploading it to your home.
  • I?m not good with graphics programs. Where can I find ready-made Avatars?

    Bardic Web’s Galleries have ready made avatars you may use.

    Where can I get HTML help?

    At the top right of each home, there is a "Need Help Decorating?" link, which will take you to the BW Home Decorator. This wizard will walk you through many of the basic changes and help you customize your home.

    You can also find help at the WebWeaver's Loom, which provides basic HTML codes to use in your home and also is a forum for HTML questions and problems. If you want a quick start, we have the basics for adding a background and changing the colours of the default text in Basic Home Page Decorating Tips. There are also topics for more advanced questions and tutorials about graphics, javascript, and web design.

    Can I upload and use MIDI files on my homepage?

    No. The upload utility here at Bardic Web will only accept .jpg and .gif files. While there is nothing to prevent you from externally referencing a MIDI, please be courteous and make sure there is a way for people visiting your home to turn it off.

    How can I get more webspace?

    Webspace can also be purchased for a modest fee, which includes additional space to upload images. See the Bardicoin section of the FAQ, or go directly to your Treasure Chest to learn more.

    Is there a way to go to a character's home without using the Character Finder?

    Yes.

  • click on the icon next to their name in the IMPanel. A new window comes up and displays their home.
  • if you are reading someone's post, you can click on the writer?s name, and a new window will open to their home.
  • from a scroll or mythos book dustjacket.(Member?s name will take you to their profile page. The icon next to their name will take you to their home page.)
  • If they've sent you an IM, click on their avatar.
  • if you've made them a Friend, click on their name from the My Friends area of the My Account page
  • What are Signatures?

    Most writers now use "sigs" for their characters. This can be as simple as their name or an object associated with them, or as intricate as the "signature banners" many of us use, using actors, musicians, models, etc as the "faces" of our characters. These are made using a graphics program such as Eyebatch or Paintshop Pro.

    The first thing you need to do is find or make the graphic you want to use. (http://www.flamingtext.com may prove useful if you want to use words.) Alternatively, you can go to Whislyn Signature Services. It will make life much easier if you can provide them with pictures or links to pictures you?d like them to incorporate. If you have an actor etc in mind, try running a google image search for them.

    Next, go to your character?s homesite and click the Add Sig button.
    Click Browse and select the file from its location on your computer.
    Click Change your Signature!
    Tada! You’re done.

    How large and what file type should my Signature be?

    Bardic Web Specifications for Signatures:

    Signatures should only be in .jpg no animated .gifs are allowed.

    Size in Pixels

    NO LARGER THAN:

    600 x 200 - Just the Sig Template
    600 x 300 - Sig and Text Template
    600 x 400 - With Sig, Text and Family Seal Template

    CHECK the templates, if any part of your sig is outside its designated area, its TOO big.

    Size in KB

    If it’s significantly over 40k, and certainly if it’s over 60, you should think about compressing it.

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    Navigating the Site

    The Navigation Tabs

    Web Central:. This is the general meeting area of the site. Here you can find FAQs, Help Files, General Conversation and Games.

    Fantasy, Horror, Sci-Fi, Intrigue and Other: These are the Genre Tabs leading to the Genre Pages. Each Genre Page lists the Scrolls and Mythos Books available in that section, as well as general information.

    My Account: The My Account page provides links to just about everywhere, including your Scrolls, Mythos books, Blogs, Private Groups, and Treasure Chest. You can change a password, delete a character, find topics you have bookmarked, search for a character, scroll or mythos book, and much more.

    How can I quickly get to the Scrolls & Mythos Books that I belong to?

    Click on the Genre Tab (e.g: Fantasy) where the Scroll or Mythos Book is filed. You will find them listed on the page. or Click on My Account, which lists all your scrolls and mythos books.

    How do I delete one of my characters, go to their home, or change their password?

    Click on My Account for a listing all the characters you have created.

  • to go to that character’s home, click on their name.
  • To Delete: Click ‘delete character’ next to the character’s name (you will need that character’s password).
  • Change Password: click ‘Change Your Password’ to go to the form.
  • How do I know if someone has left me a note at one of my homes?

    Click on My Account.

  • Charaters with blinking icons have messages.
  • Click the blinking icon will take you to the message area.
  • To save a message click ?Archive Message?
  • How do I find Messages I have Archived?

    Click the ‘check archive’ link beneath the character name.

    How do I find a specific Character, Novel, or Reference Book, or view past Daily Indexes?

    Click My Account

  • use the My Searches section of the Links and Searches page.
  • enter the name of the Character, Novel, or Reference Book - even a few letters will work - and select GO.
  • The results are displayed in a list.
  • Clicking on the name from that list will take you to where you selected.
  • To view a specific past Daily Indexes, simply select the date from the Daily Index Search and click on GO. That day’s daily index is displayed.

    What are Bookmarks?

    You can bookmark any forum or topic on BW to return to at a later date.

  • Click ‘Add Bookmark’ on the page you want to mark
  • Enter text into ‘Bookmark Title’ so you remember what it is
  • Click ‘Add Bookmark’
  • Go to ‘My Account’ to find your listed bookmarks.
  • What is the My Web Page File Manager for?

    Web space file manager is located in 'My Account', and will be inactive unless you have purchased that feature. You can use the My Web Page File Manager to edit and view your web pages. See the Bardicash section of this FAQ for information on how to buy this feature.

    What is the Friends list?

    The Friends list is a way to keep track of all your friends at Bardic Web. You can visit their homes to leave a message simply by clicking on their name. In addition, when a Friend comes online, their name goes to the top of the IMPanel under the Friends Online section, where you can easily see them.

    How do I make someone my Friend?

    - click on the Make (character name) a Friend link in an Instant Message they send you
    or
    - go to their Home and click on the Make Me a Friend link on the right hand side of their home.

    How can I find out who has me as a Friend?

    My Account -- the My Friends section has a link to a list of everyone who has made you a friend.

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    All about Scrolls:

    Where can I find a list of all the Scrolls?

    Scrolls are sorted by Genre and can be found by clicking the Genre Tabs at ‘top center’ of the site..

    What are the Genres?

    In order that people can find the sort of scrolls they might like to read or write on, Bardic Web organizes scrolls according to genre.

    We're aware that genres like history or romance are arbitrary divisions, and that a lot of literature fits into more than one category. Are Ellis Peters’ Brother Cadfael books history or mystery? Marion Zimmer Bradley’s Darkover books are science-fiction, or fantasy, depending on who you ask. There are romantic adventures, romantic sci-fi, romantic mysteries...

    In order to have some kind of organising principle, we have to draw the line somewhere. The one line we like to be clear on is the separation of speculative and non-speculative fiction.

    Speculative fiction involves elements of character, setting, technology, etc, that aren't real; that don’t exist, and never have. Werewolves, elves, spaceships, time-travel, for instance. They speculate about what might happen if these things did exist.

    At Bardic Web, the speculative genres are:

  • Fantasy
  • Horror
  • Science Fiction

  • The non-speculative genres are:
  • Intrigue
  • Other


  • When filing scrolls that cross genres, we look at whether the genres bridge this divide. If the writing is all speculative genres ie Fantasy-Horror, it can in most cases be filed according to the Masterbard’s preference for where it should sit. All non-speculative scrolls are filed under Intrigue.

    If, however, the scroll crosses a speculative with a non-speculative genre, such as Fantasy-Adventure or Romantic Sci-Fi, we strongly prefer that it be filed under the speculative genre. This is in order to keep the non-speculative genres free of imaginary elements. A writer who really loves History, for instance, doesn’t want to go to a History scroll and find it full of elves. Also, fantastic elements can totally spoil some non-speculative storylines. You can?t have a mystery if a psychic can descend and simply solve it, nor can you have a great historic conflict if someone can intervene with laser cannon.

    For more information about speculative fiction, the Wikipedia entry is a good place to start.

    If you have any questions or concerns about scroll classification, please contact one of the Muses.

    How do I join a Scroll?

    There are two ways to join a scroll - links on the left hand side of the scroll?s Dust Jacket, under the list of members.

    You may create a new character for the scroll. Clicking on this option will take you to a form where you can enter your new character’s name and specifics. If you have reached your limit of character names, you may purchase more with Bardicoins. See the Bardicoin section of the FAQ.

    Or you may add one of your existing characters to the scroll. When you choose this option you will be asked to choose one of your current character names from a drop-down box and say a few words about them.

    What is the difference between an Open and a Closed scroll?

    A member may join an "Open" scroll simply by creating a character for it or by adding an existing character. There are links underneath the member list on the left of the Dustjacket that read, "Create a Character for Scroll Name" and "Add Your Existing Character to Scroll Name."

    The same process is used to join a "Closed" scroll but the application is subject to approval by the Scroll Leadership of the Scroll. The scroll may be accepting new members, but leadership want to know who is applying and confirm that your character will fit into the scroll. Or there may be certain criteria for joining. You are encouraged to ask the Leadership if you have any questions. Note: It is mandatory for all NC-17 Scrolls to be set to Closed.

    What are the scroll Ratings, and what do they mean?

    All of the Scrolls at Bardic Web are rated for content. This is a requirement we expect all Scroll Owners to adhere to. Individual boards may be rated as well if they do not fit the Scroll’s overall rating.

    Since this site is geared to those 13 years of age and older, we do not have a G or PG rating. The ratings begin at PG-13.

    Complete listing of the ratings and descriptions: Rating System.

    What are the Tales, Role-Play Boards, and Discussion Boards, and what are they used for?

    Tales - Cooperative Stories

    Role-Play Boards - Role-play areas following a more free form style of writing

    Discussion - OOC areas, discussions for stories, cooperative posts in progress and member information

    What do the navigation bars above and below the displayed post do?

    Most of the buttons you see will take you to another part of whichever scroll you are reading. Just try them all out to see where they go. There are three of them however that warrant some explanation..

    New Topic: In most scrolls and mythos books, the Leadership ask that the members do not begin new topics without discussing it with them first. This is to keep the boards as organized as possible. If you don?t see where your post may fit in, just contact a membership of the Leadership and they will be happy to work with you.

    Edit: It's always a good idea to proofread your post once it?s up. If you?ve misspelled a word, or the link you've inserted is broken, or if you simply think of better words, the Edit button is for you. When you click on it, you will be able to make changes to your post, though the system does not allow changes to a post title. If you have mis-titled your post, you can delete it (after making sure you have a copy of it), and repost with the correct title as long as no one has replied to it. You may only edit your own posts.

    Delete: Clicking on this button will allow you to permanently delete your post. You will be offered a text box containing a copy of your post and underneath will be a 'delete' button. Once you click on this button your post is gone forever, so be sure you have a copy of it if you need one. You can change your mind by simply hitting the 'back' button on your browser. Again, if someone has already replied to your post it cannot be deleted, and you may only delete your own posts.

    My favorite topic in my scroll (or mythos book) disappeared. What happened?

    Your topic could have disappeared for a number of reasons, one of which is that it could have simply fallen onto another page. Try hitting the ?older messages? button on the topics listing. If you still don?t see it, leave a message for one of the Leadership Members.

    Who are the Scroll Leadership and what do they do?

    These are the Master Bards and their chosen staff for the scroll or Mythos Book. They set the tone of the scroll and work hard to keep it active and interesting. Master Bards own their Scrolls and have the ultimate say on what goes on in it. They create the mythos and provide ?worlds? for others to write in. Leadership maintain the Dust Jacket and are responsible for reviewing applications for membership and communicating with members.

    How do I become a Board Member?

    Leadership Members are selected by the Master Bards at their discretion.

    How do I start a scroll?

    You must first Subscribe at the Master Bard Level. All the information you need can be found in the scroll Application Guide.

    What kind of stories can I have in my Scroll?

    Your Scroll must meet the criteria for the Genre you select, if it does not, Bardic Web reserves the right to relabel your Scroll and insert it in the proper Genre. Bardic Web also reserves the right to alter the rating on your scroll to reflect its content.
    Your Scroll is your own, you may write what you wish as long as it adheres to Bardic Web's Terms of Service, Code of Conduct and Copyright restrictions. On that note, please remember that we do not allow FanFic as this is a violation of copyright.

    Fantasy

    ~This definition is an edited extract from Wikipedia's Fantasy Novel entry.~

    In literature, fantasy is a form of speculative fiction in which physical laws differ from our own through a reason for which no scientific explanation is offered, or which take place a world wholly different from our own. In the context of speculative fiction, if science fiction is considered a genre of what could be, and alternate history a genre of what might have been, fantasy is the genre of what is (or was) not. In its broadest sense, fantasy covers works by many authors, from ancient myths and legends to some recent works embraced by mainstream literary audiences.

    Using this definition, there are many possibilities for Fantasy. Here at Bardic Web it has resulted in many fantastical worlds and creatures, places where things that are far from the norm may occur; unexplained magic and shape shifting abilities, portals that lead from one place to another, creatures that could not possibly exist in reality. A Fantasy scroll must contain these elements and be solely the creation of the writer?s mind, not any form of fan fiction.

    Intrigue

    Adventure

    Adventure contains the elements of chance and especially the chance of danger, so a hazardous venture or extraordinary incident is key. Adventures typically take place in the past, often with the hero or heroes having to face typically unacceptable odds while trying to escape the villains in the story by using their wits. Other story lines consist of searching for a lost city or for a hidden treasure, an outlaw figure/s fighting for justice, and one cannot forget the ever-popular Pirates.

    Also: Mystery fiction is a distinct subgenre of detective fiction that entails the occurrence of an unknown event which requires the protagonist to make known (or solve). It is similar to the whodunnit in that the clues may often be given to the reader by subtle means. Though it is often confused with detective fiction, it does not require a crime to have occurred or the involvement of law enforcement. Here at Bardic Web a Mystery scroll may be any scroll which contains such elements of mystery and suspense. These elements should be solely the creation of the writer?s mind, not any form of fan fiction.

    History

    ~This definition is an edited extract from Wikipedia's Historical Novel entry.~

    Historical fiction may center on historical or on fictional characters, but usually represents an honest attempt based on considerable research (or at least serious reading) to tell a story set in the historical past as understood by the author's contemporaries. Here at Bardic Web a History scroll may be any scroll which is set among historical events. Whilst these events may be real, we do, however, request that writers abstain from using genuine historical figures on the open boards of Bardic Web, or from writing fan fiction.

    Romance

    "A romance is a love story in which the central focus is on the development and satisfactory resolution of the love relationship between the two main characters, written in such a way as to provide the reader with some degree of vicarious emotional participation in the courtship process." Kris Ramsdell, Romance Fiction: A Guide to the Genre

    Horror

    ~This definition is an edited extract from Wikipedia's Horror Fiction entry.~

    Horror fiction is, broadly, fiction in any media intended to scare, unsettle or horrify the reader. Historically, the cause of the "horror" experience has necessarily been the intrusion of an evil, or occasionally misunderstood, supernatural element into everyday human experience. Since the 1960s, any work fiction with a morbid, gruesome, surreal, exceptionally suspenseful or frightening theme has come to be called "horror".

    Science Fiction

    ~This definition is an edited extract from Wikipedia's Science Fiction entry.~

    Science fiction is a form of speculative fiction principally dealing with the impact of imagined science and technology upon society and persons as individuals. In defining the scope of the science fiction genre, we speak of the effect of science on society or people, that is;

  • the effect of imagined science
  • the imagined effect of actual science
  • imagined technology based upon actual science
  • imagined technology based upon imagined science
  • the effect of science on imagined societies
  • the effect of science on imagined individuals

  • If the society, the person, the technology, and the scientific knowledge base in the story are all standard and realistic (drawn from observed reality), the story would be classed as mainstream, contemporary fiction rather than as science fiction. In some cases, the term "science fiction" generally refers to any literary fantasy including a scientific factor as an essential, story-orienting component. Science fiction is not necessarily futuristic.

    How do I set up my Scroll?

    First you have to order your Scroll. If you haven't done that yet:

  • Click My Account
  • Click the Your Treasure Chest Link
  • Scroll down and click the 'Create a Scroll' button
  • Fill in the Application
  • You will have 3 set areas in your Scroll. You must provide the names of the forums (containers for your topics) to the Muse so they can set them up for you. (A Muse will contact you for this information after you have submitted your application.)

    1. Tales
    This is the area to set up your actual Stories. Suggested forums for this area are:

  • Current Tales
  • Completed Tales
  • 2. Role-Play Boards

    This area is for role-play.

    If this is a world you will want to put some serious thought into the names of the Forums -- these will be geographical areas.

    For Example:

  • North-Western Continent - Kingdom of Clouds
  • North-Western Continent - Kingdom of Rivers
  • South-Eastern Continent - Barren Lands
  • If this is simply a scroll of Tales and Role-Play the process will be a bit simpler. The Forums here can be whatever you like.

    For Example:

  • City of Wishes
  • Sea of Dreams
  • 3. Discussion Boards

    This area is for general discussion and story discussion. We suggest you use generic terms for the forums so you can reuse them.

    For Example:

  • General Discussion
  • Tale 1 Discussion and Notes
  • Tale 1 Co-Posts
  • Tale 2 Discussion and Notes
  • Tale 2 Co-Posts
  • NB: These forums (including those for stories) are only accessible to writers signed in as characters that are members of your scroll. However, all such writers will have access to all forums in this area. If you have stories that are closed to new sign-ups or invitation-only, you may wish to make a note of this on the discussion board. If you require greater privacy than this, you may wish to consider using a private group instead. (See: What are private groups? in the FAQs for more information)

    Once the Muse have set up your Forums, it is time for you to post your 'Topics', this is where actual posting will take place.

    Eg:

  • Forum: Current Tales
  • Topic: The Secret Shelf
  • Topic: The Hole in the Wall
  • Forum: North-Western Cointinent - Kingdom of Clouds
  • Topic: Castle of Winds
  • Topic: Wilds of the Dark Forest
  • Once your topics are in place they are open for comments. Congratulations! Your Scroll is ready to use.

    What is a Joint Scroll Ownership Agreement?

    A Joint Scroll Ownership Agreement is a written statement filed with the Muses that a scroll belongs equally to the individuals named. If you wish to set up such an agreement, please speak to one of the Muses. Staff members or administrators of a scroll who do not have a Joint Scroll Ownership Agreement filed with the Muses will not to be considered joint owners.

    About Mythos Books:

    What are Mythos Books, and where do I find them?

    Mythos Books are Glossary and Codex Companions to the Scrolls. If a Scroll is a 'World', then a Mythos Book is a guide to that World. All information within is the copyrighted property of the Mythos Master. They can be found by clicking the Genre tab where they are filed.

    Who are the Mythos Masters?

    Mythos Masters are Master Bards who have purchased Mythos Books to display in-depth Glossaries about their Scrolls.

    How do I join a Mythos Book?

    On left hand side of the Dust Jacket of each Mythos Book just click on "Apply to Join" and fill out the application. If you have more than one character, make sure that the name of the one you want in the book is showing in the box above the application text box. The Mythos Masters regularly check for applications from prospective members and will leave you a message when you are accepted.

    What are the Glossary and discussion boards for?

    Glossary - Information on a given world provided by its Mythos Master.
    Discussion - This is where Mythos is developed, suggestions are made, and questions are asked.

    How do I start a Mythos Book?

    You must first be a subscriber at the MasterBard level. There are 'catch all' Mythos Books in each genre for those who do not own a Mythos book but still wish to share information about their Worlds or Races.

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    About Character Blogs and Private groups

    Where are Character Blogs?

    The blogs are accessible via the "View Blog Posts" link near the top of the main Daily index, which will take you to that day?s posts for all the blogs. On the character homes, there is also a link on the right hand side, under the lists of scrolls and mythos books that character belongs to. The link is called "My Blog" and if the character has purchased a blog, you can click on the name of the blog to see it.

    How do I get a Blog?

    Blogs are available for 4 bardicoins per year per character, and can be purchased through your Treasure Chest. See the Bardicash section of this FAQ for information on how to buy this feature..

    What are Private Groups, and how can I get one?

    Each Private Group is viewable only by characters that belong to it. They are only available to Founding Members and MasterBards. If you have subscribed at that level (or are Staff), then you can use the Host a Private Group link in your Treasure Chest.

    How can I join a Private Group?

    Private Groups are by Invitation only. The owner has to add you; there is no application to join a Private Group.

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    Community Questions:

    What is the Gossamer Thread?

    The Gossamer Thread is our newspaper, written by our members. It contains articles, reviews, columns and interviews of different characters around Bardic Web. If you are interested in contributing please contact the Thread?s Editors.

    What are the Badges I see on character?s homes and mentioned around the site?

    Badges are handed out for various areas of participation around the site. If you have been in the mentorship program or write for the Thread, chances are, you'll find one on your site.

    What are the awards at Bardic Web?

    Gold Star, Bright Idea and other awards are handed out to people who are lucky enough to have their work posted in the Gold Star Forum or have suggested something really great for the site.

    What are the Plumes, and who gives them out?

    Plumes are the highest level of awards at Bardic Web. They are given out during site celebrations like Character Month, Writer Month, Bardic Web?s Anniversary and our Annual Short Story Contest. Nominations in various categories are voted on by our members and the awards themselves are doled out by Thalia.

    What is the Mentorship Program?

    We can all remember what it's like to join a new writing or role-playing community. It can be intensely intimidating finding your way around in an environment where everyone else knows each other, and seem practised old hands. (Most of us are, in fact, faking it.)

    In an effort to make the initial learning period easier for new writers, we have instituted a mentorship program. Every new writer will be assigned two Parnassus-appointed mentors.

    The mentor's job is to keep in contact with the new writer, answer their questions and concerns, and offer guidance. The mentor should be the writer?s first point of contact, someone they know they can ask questions of, confident that they're not making a nuisance of themselves. From an administration point of view, it gives us the confidence that there?s always someone who knows how a new member is going on. This doesn?t mean that new writers aren't perfectly free to deal with other admins or established writers. It?s your mentor, however, whose job it is to look out for you.

    Mentorship periods will vary from writer to writer. We try to find the amount of mentoring that's right for each individual. Someone who posts every day, for instance, will probably need a shorter mentoring period from someone who posts once a week.

    What is the Family Tree?

    Many of our characters have large families, through marriage or otherwise. The Family Tree is maintained by Shadow Silverleaf, a generous donation of her time and effort. It keeps track of who is related to who, marriages, children etc. Without it, our writers would all be quite lost. Just take a look at Galain's Family Tree or the D'Riel tree and you will see what I mean. Or hey, ask Melaina Alcarin about family relations, guaranteed she'll pull out a roll of graph paper, several rulers and a pack of freshly-sharpened pencils.

    You?ll be there a while... trust me.

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    BW Staff & Problems at Bardic Web:

    What do the different staff members do at Bardic Web?

    The Staff of Bardic Web are volunteers from all over the world that the owner of Bardic Web has carefully selected for their technical and people skills. They are not paid to be here, they just simply love their jobs; they are Writers just like you. As a governing body they have created an environment in which everyone is treated with respect for their talent and 'hopefully' one in which everyone can feel at home.

    Demi-Urge: The Demi-Urge are the tech crew -- the site owner and programmers responsible for fixing bugs and keeping things running smoothly from the back end. Please try not to disturb these folks as they are generally pretty busy. They can be identified by the gold star next to their names.

    Muse: A Muse is top-level Administration, each being assigned to a Genre. It is their responsibility to edit and maintain scrolls in their assigned Genre Library and assist writers with every-day functions of the site. If your Muse is off-line, please feel free to contact any others visible on the panel if you require immediate assistance. Their responsibilities lie heavily on the technical functions of boards: edit, delete, create. These are the folks you should contact if having technical difficulties. They can be identified by a silver star next to their name on the IMPanel.

    Demi-Muse: Demi-Muse are assistants to the Muse. They are here to meet and greet the writers, answer questions, and guide them through the site. They research for the Muse, and cover the less technical questions for users. These are the folks you should seek out when needing assistance getting around the site. They can be identified by a gold triangle next to their name on the IMPanel.

    WebWeavers: Web Weavers are a unique level at Bardic Web who provide assistance to our writers. They are Site Portrait Artists, Web Designers, Graphic Artists, Signature Artists and Editors. They provide artistic skills, help with CSS/HTML or editing services to the other members of Bardic Web depending on their talents. They can be identified by a silver triangle next to their name on the IMPanel.

    Who are the current Staff Members of Bardic Web?

    You can see a list of the current Volunteer Staff on our Staff Page.

    How does one become a Muse, Demi-Muse or WebWeaver?

    The Volunteer recruitment process is at the sole discretion of Bardic Web?s owner. Those selected are from among veteran writers that have proven their reliability, discretion, writing and organization skills over time. There is no application process for the job: when a position needs to be filled, Bardic Web's owner will choose someone from Bardic Web based on the above criteria. Muse and Demi-Muse are completely anonymous for a reason, they deserve their peaceful writing time as much as anyone else, anonymity gives them the freedom to do so and leaves them free of the stigma of 'favouritism'.

    I forgot my password.

    If you are already on the site, you may contact a Muse and we will get your password to you right away. If you cannot get onto the site because of a forgotten password or a login problem, please email administration@bardicweb.com using the email address you used when registering to the site. Also, you may wish to add "administration" to your address book, just so that anti-spam tools don't inadvertently send the response to your "junk" bin, or worse yet, cyberspace.

    I'm having problems with another member. What do I do?

    From time to time writers run into conflict with one another, it is unavoidable in a community with such a diverse nature. If it is just a personal problem, then it is up to you to handle it. However, if it begins to show itself on the boards, it affects everyone.



    Flaming and disrespect
  • Keep copies of Inboxes, Posts etc that contain inflammatory content. Abuse is not tolerated here anymore than it would be at your place of employment
  • Send copies that infringe on Bardic Web's Terms of Service and Code of Conduct to your Genre Muse. If we don?t see it, we can't do anything about it.
  • Make sure Inboxes include name of sender as well as the date and posts include the original web address

  • Breaches of Role-Playing Etiquette
  • Make sure the Scroll in question has a Parnassus seal on its front page. This is the only guarantee you have that the RP Etiquette is being enforced. MasterBards are free to operate their scroll in the matter they see fit as long as it does not breach Bardic Web's TOS or COC.
  • Contact the other writer through Inbox and ask for an edit. This is often the easiest and less controversial way to solve a problem.
  • If the other writer is uncooperative, report the breach to the MasterBard and lodge a formal complaint. It is YOUR responsibility to protect your rights.
  • If the MasterBard is unable to mediate successfully, you may wish to consider contacting the Genre Muse. Please do keep in mind, however, that they cannot tell a MasterBard how to run their Scroll unless the infraction has breached Bardic Web's Terms of Service or Code of Conduct. They will remove Scrolls from the Parnassus ring if there are a number of RP Etiquette breaches in which the MasterBard fails to intervene.

  • Note:ALL correspondence MUST be done via Bardic Web Inboxes or IM. We CANNOT handle complaints that occur over offsite Instant Messaging or through offsite email. Our responsibility lies only within Bardic Web itself.

    If you are receiving unwanted Instant Messages from a single person, you can click on the Ignore messages from (member name) link at the bottom of each gram. This will tell you that "Messages from (member name) will no longer be delivered." This will stay in effect until you click on their name in the panel again, as if you were going to send them an Instant Message. You will get a box that says "You are ignoring (member name). Do you wish to revoke the ignore?" If you choose Yes, then messages will be delivered as normal again.

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    Membership:

    How does membership work?

    Bardic Web needs member support to survive. If you purchase a subscription, then you will receive many benefits, including special icons to let everyone know that you?re a subscriber, as well as Bardicash to spend on many of the wonderful features, including Invisibility, blogs, more character slots, and many others. You can see all the features available for purchase in the Treasure Chest.

    What are the different membership levels, and what do they mean?

    For a complete listing of the member levels and their icons, please visit the Member Levels page.

    How do I upgrade or renew my membership?

    It is easy to upgrade or renew your membership by going to the Subscription link in the top right corner. Or you can visit your My Account page and click on the Bardicoin icon at the top, or the link to your Treasure Chest.

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    Bardicash:

    What is Bardicash?

    Bardicash is site currency and can be used on Bardic Web for a number of fun and useful features to improve your enjoyment of the site. A bardicoin is one unit of currency and it is worth $5.

    What can I buy with Bardicash?

    You can buy some of the many features at Bardic Web like an Instant Message Bank, a Blog, a Study, Reserved Characters, Member Banners, Web Space or Invisibility, or you can give it away as a gift to your Bardic Web friends. You can see all the features available for purchase in the Treasure Chest.

    How do I acquire Bardicash and how do I know how much I have?

    At the top of My Account you will find a notation saying "My Bardicoins" that will tell you how many bardicoins you currently have. You will also see a Your Treasure Chest link that will let you view all of the features available and how much they cost. There is a link at the bottom of the page that leads you to a form to fill out in order to purchase Bardicash.

    I would like to donate, but I don?t know the conversion rate for my country?s currency and the Canadian dollar.

    Currency conversion rates fluctuate. If you pay by PayPal, then PayPal will do the conversion automatically. However, if you pay by Money Order, you will need to do a conversion. If on the day that you decide to purchase your membership you need a conversion rate from your country?s currency to Canadian Dollars (CAD), simply go to the XE Currency Converter and you can find out what the cost is in CAD. If you can, please note the date that you figured the conversion rate along with your payment as a reference.

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    Policies:

    What are my Copyright entitlements at Bardic Web?

    Bardic Web's policy on copyright is laid out here, but like most legal agreements, the language is difficult, and it's hard to tell what it means in practical terms. This article is designed to give our writers a concrete idea of what their rights are, and aren?t, and how to avoid copyright disputes.

    Most amateur writers never even think about copyright and don't believe it applies to them. This generally lasts right up until a character appears with eerie similarities to yours. The fact that we write co-operatively at Bardic Web throws up a few unique problems as far as copyright law goes too, and we've had to work out what the implications are.

    The Written Words

    Copyright is a form of intellectual property. One thing many writers don't realize is that you have automatic intellectual property rights over anything you write. You don't have to formally copyright something to own it. That area is straight-forward: the words that you wrote in any piece belong to you.

    The texts of stories themselves, therefore, don't belong to the Story Leader. Rather, each individual paragraph belongs to the person who wrote it. If a story leader wishes to publish a story, they must get WRITTEN permission from EVERY writer involved in the story. If this is no longer possible, e.g. because a writer can no longer be contacted, their writing must be removed before publication.

    Characters

    People also hold automatic copyright over their characters, as they would over any other artistic creation. This copyright includes use of the character's name, and the expression of the ideas involved, but not the ideas themselves. Because you all just went 'bwa??, here's a concrete example from Wikipedia?s copyright article:

    For example, the copyright which subsists in relation to a Mickey Mouse cartoon prohibits unauthorized parties from distributing copies of the cartoon or creating derivative works which copy or mimic Disney's particular anthropomorphic mouse, but does not prohibit the creation of artistic works about anthropomorphic mice in general, so long as they are sufficiently different to not be imitative of the original.

    So for instance, An'Thaya's writer holds copyright over An?Thaya, but not over the concept of 'Amazon'. Another writer could create an Amazon, as long as that Amazon was sufficiently different from An'Thaya to not be considered an imitation, either of character or of mythos. Writers tempted to do this, or to create large-breasted empathic diplomats or charming flirtatious many-childed blond elven princes, should note that Bardic Web admin tend to err on the side of the original writer when it comes to disputes over imitation.

    Mythos

    Writers hold copyright over their mythos. Allowing someone else to write in your mythos gives them the right to use it for the purposes you've laid out normally, to write one character, on one site: ours. It does not give them any other rights to the mythos. They cannot change or add to the mythos, or create more characters in the mythos, without permission.

    So, who has rights to a character written by Writer A, in Writer B?s mythos? Unless explicitly agreed otherwise, it's rather tricky. When it comes to a split or dispute, Writer A owns the rights to everything they?ve already written. That's what Writer B agreed to give away. The writer who made up the character and named it owns the character and the name. Mostly, this will be Writer A, but sometimes, as with Y'Roden's Corinian's, the Mythos master will do this. If Writer A created the character, then the character is theirs, but the mythos isn't. In most cases, it would be absolutely impossible to write that character in another place without their attendant mythos, and the character would either change into someone completely different, or be unworkable. You could not, for instance, write a S'Hean without access to the world of S'Hea.

    How to Avoid Copyright Disputes

    In the case of character vs mythos disputes, be very, very clear about what you're agreeing to in the first place. If you're the mythos master, consider:

  • do you want the writer to be able to write this character on other boards or in other places? By default they have the right to do so as long as they don't use your mythos. If this is something you really don?t want, then either make up the character yourself, or have the writer agree, IN WRITING, to limit their use of the character
  • how do you feel about the character breeding and the children being written by a different writer? If you want restrictions on this, lay it out in advance to avoid any confusion.
  • Do you want the right to take the character back if the writer either leaves or gets bored with them? If so, say.
  • Are you happy with the writer being able to take what they themselves have written, and using it elsewhere? If you aren't, you shouldn't be letting other people write in your mythos. While they can sign it away, this is a basic right of the writer.
  • What if, over time, you become unhappy about the way the character is being written? If they're clearly being written out of mythos, in a way that damages people?s perceptions of your mythos, then you have a clear case. If however, you just don't like 'em, you don't have a leg to stand on unless either you created the character yourself, or you have a pre-agreement that gives you the right to take the character back. Think about this when you're deciding who you let write in your mythos.

  • If you're the writer, consider:
  • do you want to be able to use this character in other places? What if the board you're using it on collapses? Are you likely to get attached to them? If you want to use the character elsewhere, get it in writing. Regardless of this, if you write them elsewhere, you cannot use the mythos elsewhere without express permission. Does the character work without their mythos?
  • Be wary about taking on a character someone else created and named. Unless otherwise agreed, you own your writing, but not the character. You should only enter into this kind of agreement with someone you really trust.
  • Are you likely to want to marry and breed with this character? If you do, ASK. Not only is it common politeness, but it will help avoid trouble. Be aware of any breeding or mating restrictions that come with the mythos you don't own copyright to the mythos and you CANNOT change it. You can't 'fix' a 'defect' in a character that's the result of their race.
  • If you are asked to put aside your natural rights in a particular area, be very clear about exactly what you're agreeing to. If you're ceding copyright to a particular piece of writing, or for a particular purpose, make sure the actual agreement doesn't read as if you're giving away something more general.
  • If there is no written agreement between the parties, the Bardic Web admins will revert to default. The mythos master owns the mythos. The person who created the character owns the character. The writer owns the actual writing.

    Be aware that if you're one of those writers who habitually gets other people to write your character descriptions or pieces of your mythos, then that other writer OWNS them. You can?t reproduce or even alter them without express permission.

    Bardic Web's Rights and Responsibilities

    Bardic Web owns the right to display your work, but not to reproduce it. You still retain the right to republish work you've written here, on other sites or in other forms.

    As writers, Bardic Web's administration are keen to do anything we can to protect our writer's rights to their creations. We will do everything we can to protect their rights on our site, up to and including blocking characters we consider to be imitations and banning writers guilty of plagiarism.

    We cannot, however, police other sites. We have no jurisdiction to stop a writer doing anything on a separate site, though we can and may take action against them on Bardic Web. Protecting your intellectual property rights outside of Bardic Web is, unfortunately, your own responsibility.

    Religion, Politics and Bardic Web:

    Politics and religion are taboo subjects on Bardic Web. This is not an attempt to stifle anyone or their free speech, it is simply out of respect for the diversity of writers who play and work here.

    It is very easy to accidentally offend someone by offering to pray for him or her, light a candle for him or her, or by using a religion based phrase. It isn?t something we often think about in day-to-day life, but we make it a practice here to be accepting of everyone and what they hold dear.

    For this reason, religion and politics are never discussed on the boards in any fashion. If one viewpoint is expressed, then all of them would have to be expressed and that is where we stop having fun, and start having arguments.

    Real-life holidays are not celebrated here at Bardic Web, instead we celebrate the rich cultural celebrations that our writers have built so lovingly into their mythos. There is never a lack of anything to do, and it keeps things fun and all-inclusive.

    The Admin team asks that you join with us in this endeavor to make everyone feel at home and secure in our writing environment.

    Helpful neutral phrases are:

  • I'll be thinking of you.
  • Happy Holidays
  • Wish you luck.
  • B.W's Policy on MasterBards and their Scrolls:

    MasterBards pay to have their own space. Scrolls are privately owned, so what goes into them and how stories and role-play are run is entirely up to them within the privacy of their own Scroll - as long as they never break Bardic Web?s Terms of Service or Code of Conduct. Bardic Web reserves the right to select the genre and rating of their Scroll based on content. All content rated NC-17 or Adult must be set to Closed.

    Scrolls that belong to Parnassus must display its logo and follow the Role-playing Etiquette. It is also suggested that they take advantage of the mentoring program for new writers.

    Scrolls that go for a period of 2 years with no activity and have a Master Bard that has defaulted on their Subscription payment will be deleted.

    Scrolls that have Master Bards that have defaulted on their Subscription payments shall be put on Hiatus until payment is made.

    B.W's Policy on Polls and Voting:

    Here at Bardic Web we often use polls to allow the community to determine who should receive awards and plumes. In order to ensure this process is as fair as possible, we ask that all writers follow the same guidelines when voting. Unless specifically stated otherwise, these are:

    1. Writers are entitled to one vote per WRITER (not per character id),
    2. Writers may not vote for themselves.
    Any infringement of these guidelines may lead to disqualification.

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    General:

    What are the Terms of Use for the site?

    The Bardic Web Community is intended to be a place for writers and roleplayers online. Bardic Web values all forms of Creativity on the Site. However, this must be done without impeding the enjoyment of any other members of the Site. Please read Bardic Web?s Code of Conduct.

    How do I report an abuse of the site?

    If you feel that Bardic Web?s Code of Conduct has been violated, please contact a Muse, or write to feedback@bardicweb.com



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